A couple months ago, while browsing the shelves at my local library, I spied and checked out The New Rules of Lifting by Lou Schuler and Alwyn Cosgrove. While I absorbed much of the information, finding it helpful for me in figuring out my daily workouts and nutrition, in starting to think about a workout template, I felt at the time that some of the exercises/moves/suggestions may need to be adjusted for women.
I LOVED that the book contained named templates and a series that guided a man through an entire year’s of workouts. From initial skill-building (the break-in program) through a fat-loss program and several strength building programs: endurance and muscle building. Each program was NAMED giving me a clear way to understand why the changed in routines were put there, how each change should impact a workout, and what the goal of that month would be if I were using it.
I was thrilled to see that they were publishing a companion edition of the book that I hoped would fill my needs: The New Rules of Lifting for Women. With the original two authors, they added Cassandra Forsythe to reinforce any changes required between the men’s information/exercises and the women’s.
I LOVE how they have adapted the diet and exercise information for women to include our lower testosterone levels, and how female hormones may effect diet and exercise. I re-read the section called “Core of Babylon.” because I think it explains how some of my chronic ache and pains are related and gives a clue about how to reduce their impact their on my life.
I LIKE the photos and demonstrations of different exercises, especially some of the alternatives.
I HATE that the workouts for women are labeled Stage One, Stage Two, etc. What the heck does Stage one mean? And why couldn’t the authors simply have equated to the men’s “initial skill” level? What am I concentrating on in Stage Two? Is it stability, endurance?
Personally, this feels like a cop-out to me. Like “women can’t deal” with workout named to conform with exercise regimes like NASMs OPT models. (which I simply chose because I could find it.) Now I can carefully study the recommended exercises and sequences and likely figure out for myself what the authors were aiming for, but WHY SHOULD I??
With all the respectful, thorough and useful information in this book, why did the authors have to back away from naming their different stages by some kind of function? I’d love to hear a reason that make me feel condenscended to.